Pickleball is a popular racquet sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton, and ping pong. It’s a fun and easy-to-learn game that can be played by people of all ages and skill levels. One of the key skills in pickleball is keeping your eye on the ball. In this article, we’ll go over some tips and tricks to help you improve your ability to track the ball and stay focused during gameplay.
1. Focus on the Ball
The first step to keeping your eye on the pickleball is to make sure you’re actually looking at the ball. This may seem obvious, but it’s easy to get distracted by your opponent, the court, or other things happening around you. To avoid this, focus your attention solely on the ball. Watch it as it comes over the net and keep your eyes on it as you prepare to hit it back.
2. Keep Your Head Still
Another important tip is to keep your head still. Moving your head around too much can cause your vision to blur and make it harder to track the ball. Instead, keep your head steady and use your eyes to follow the ball’s movement. This will help you stay focused and react more quickly to the ball.
3. Anticipate the Ball’s Movement
In addition to focusing on the ball and keeping your head still, it’s also important to anticipate the ball’s movement. Pay attention to your opponent’s shot and try to predict where the ball is going to go. This will give you a split-second advantage and allow you to react more quickly to the ball.
4. Practice Eye Exercises
Improving your eye coordination is another way to keep your eye on the pickleball. There are many eye exercises you can do to improve your eye coordination, such as tracking a moving object or focusing on a specific point while moving your head. Incorporating these exercises into your practice routine can help you develop better eye-hand coordination and make it easier to keep your eye on the ball.
5. Stay Focused
Finally, staying focused is key to keeping your eye on the pickleball. Avoid getting distracted by things happening around you and stay in the moment. Try to stay relaxed and focused on the task at hand. With practice, you’ll be able to maintain your focus and keep your eye on the ball throughout the game.
6. Use Peripheral Vision
While keeping your eyes fixed on the ball is important, it’s also essential to use your peripheral vision. This allows you to see what’s happening on the court around you, such as the position of your opponent and the location of the net. By using your peripheral vision, you can react more quickly to the ball and anticipate your opponent’s shots.
7. Stay Low
Staying low and keeping your knees bent can also help you keep your eye on the pickleball. This lowers your center of gravity and allows you to move more quickly and easily around the court. It also helps you maintain balance and stability, which is important for hitting accurate shots.
8. Play with Different People
Playing with different people can help you improve your ability to keep your eye on the pickleball. Different opponents have different playing styles and hit the ball in different ways. This can challenge your ability to track the ball and react quickly to it. Playing with different people can also help you learn new strategies and techniques.
9. Take Breaks
Taking breaks during gameplay can also help you maintain your focus and keep your eye on the ball. Pickleball can be a physically demanding sport, and taking a few minutes to rest and regroup can help you stay alert and focused. It’s also important to stay hydrated and nourished during gameplay to help you maintain your energy and focus.
10. Practice, Practice, Practice
Like any skill, keeping your eye on the pickleball takes practice. The more you play, the more your eye-hand coordination and focus will improve. Incorporating these tips and techniques into your practice routine can help you improve more quickly and become a better pickleball player overall.
Keeping your eye on the pickleball is an essential skill for playing pickleball. By focusing on the ball, keeping your head still, anticipating the ball’s movement, practicing eye exercises, and staying focused, you’ll be able to improve your ability to track the ball and react more quickly to it. With these tips and tricks, you’ll be on your way to becoming a better pickleball player in no time.